By DARREN MILLER
IOWA CITY, Iowa — McKenna Warnock grew up 30 minutes from the Kohl Center, home of University of Wisconsin basketball. Her high school, Monona Grove, is 15 minutes away.
On Sunday, Warnock scored 20 points and made 4 of 5 3-point field goals off the bench to help No. 17 University of Iowa to a 97-71 win over the Badgers in front of 9,506 on Mediacom Court in Carver-Hawkeye Arena.
“Growing up around Wisconsin basketball, and then going to its rival school, is a big deal,” said Warnock, a freshman. “It was exciting to play them, they are always fun to play.”
University of Iowa head coach Lisa Bluder interjected:
“We’re glad she chose us,” she said.
The 3-point total is a career-high for Warnock, who scored 22 points against Michigan State on Jan. 26. The Hawkeyes outscored Wisconsin, 39-20, in bench points. Freshman Gabbie Marshall added eight points and sophomore Logan Cook scored five.
Iowa (21-5 overall, 12-3 Big Ten) won for a 34th consecutive time at home by shooting 54.8 percent from the field (9 of 12 in the third quarter). Four Hawkeyes scored in double figures, led by senior Kathleen Doyle with 22 points, Warnock, sophomore Monika Czinano (19), and senior Makenzie Meyer (13). Senior Amanda Ollinger pulled down 10 rebounds with two blocked shots. Czinano had eight rebounds and Doyle accounted for five of Iowa’s 21 assists.
Wisconsin (11-15, 3-12) received 17 points and 12 rebounds from Imani Lewis.
QUOTING COACH BLUDER
“We won every quarter and had four people in double figures; I like that balance. We shot the ball well from every area.
“We received good bench play — Gabbie Marshall, McKenna came off the bench and did a great job.
“Bouncing back from Thursday (a 93-59 loss at Maryland), we needed that great fan support. For that many people to come and support us, we were thrilled and can’t thank our fans enough.”
STATISTIC OF THE GAME
Iowa made 7 of 15 3-point field goals in the first half and finished with 10. It is the sixth time the Hawkeyes have made double-figure 3-pointers in a game and the first since making 10 at Minnesota on Jan. 16.
Iowa had four players hit from distance: Warnock (four), Makenzie Meyer (three), Marshall (two), and Doyle (one).
Czinano made her first seven field goals against Wisconsin after going 7 of 7 from the field at Maryland. She finished Sunday’s game making 8 of 11 from the field and leads NCAA Division I in field goal percentage (170 of 242, 70.2 percent).
The Hawkeye play the second of three straight home games Saturday against Penn State with tip-off set for 2 p.m. (CT). Iowa won the first meeting, 77-66, on Jan. 30 in University Park, Pennsylvania. The Nittany Lions (7-19, 1-14) lost at home to Maryland on Sunday, 106-69.
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